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Keeping Your Head Warm Does Not Mean Your Feet Will Be Warm

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For at least 50 years we have been told if you want to keep your feet warm “wear a hat”. I say if you want to keep your head warm, aside from wearing a hat, keep your feet warm.

I hunted for many years in the Fossil Ridge Wilderness area of Colorado which is located north east of Gunnison. I hunted 3rd season which starts the first Saturday of November. Elevation 12,000 to 12,500 feet. As some know I managed to get lost for three days and experienced a major snow storm. The mountains make their own weather and if you have never experienced snow falling at about 8 inches an hour it is an experience. I was wearing my Fossil Ridge parka which has a removable hood, and it removed itself and for two days until I got back to base camp I did not have any form of head cover. The temperatures were between -10 and with wind chill maybe -40. My hair froze but my head was never cold. And I was never cold during the entire experience. The reason I was never cold was attributed to the fact that the rest of my body was well insulated.

The first layer of clothing I was wearing was my fishnet long underwear; second layer was a plaid cotton flannel shirt, and jeans. Next on my legs were my leg jackets that are insulated with L-6 Lamilite and inside the Novasuede parka was the L-12 liner. That is the same weight of Lamilite used in my Antarctic parka. On my feet were the heaviest weight wool socks I could buy, hiking boots and my Joe Redington Muk Luks. Handwear was my Renegade mittens. Like I said I was never cold, one hell of a way to find out how good my products perform. From this experience I wouldn’t have any problem going to the coldest places on earth so long as I could dress myself.

In the head area of the human body there is about 15 percent of the blood flowing through it at any one time. It is not stagnant there but always moving. We know that the extremities of our body receive its blood supply last. Therefore, the better the insulation is covering our hand and feet not only do these extremities stay warm but the blood flowing back to the heart is warm and it follows that the blood pumped from the heart to the head area will be warm. It takes less than one minute for the blood to get pumped to every cell in the body. I would say due to the speed that the blood is flowing through the body there isn’t much time for the head area to lose much heat. There is some lost but after my experience I do not think it is that much so long as all of the rest of your body is well insulated. Also, keep in mind that as heat is leaving your body through the neckline of your outer parka that heat is helping to keep your head warm as well.

Therefore, wearing a hat will help to keep your head warm but if you are wearing gloves and footwear that is not insulated very well both hands and feet will get cold and in cold conditions it doesn’t take long, and I do not care if you are wearing a fur hat such as the Russians wear. Gloves separate the fingers versus mittens that keep them together. In that manner they help to warm each other. In over 40 years of skiing I never used anything but mittens and never had cold hands while everyone I knew who wore gloves always had cold hands except when they were spring skiing. When it comes to footwear I stand by the fact that every footwear product I have ever made out performs everything else on the market. Here in Grand Junction we have been having a record cold December, been as cold as -11. We have received a record snow fall, over 12 or 13 inches so far this winter. I live on an old farm about 8 or 9 acres and walk my dog every morning. Since the snows came I wear my pack boots or leather boots and do not bother to put on socks in the morning, I do not have cold feet!!! The temperatures I walk in are 10 to -10 and the snow depth is about 9 inches so far. All of these products have Lamilite insulation.

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